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Toyota’s New Plan To Make Cars More Affordable



Toyota’s financial services division has teamed up with U.S. car-sharing company Getaround to come up with a car rental system that will allow Toyota and Lexus owners to rent out their vehicles.

Start-up company Getaround, gives car owners the ability to rent out their cars for hours or even days and around 20% of their listed vehicles are Toyotas.

The automaker is first conducting a 500-car test in San Francisco next January and owners of a Toyota Prius or Lexus C200h is eligible to be selected. On top of using their rental earnings to make lease payments, an owner’s earnings through this system will be considered if they choose to buy the car after the lease is up.

You won’t be leaving an extra key in the car for prospective renters, instead, each rental vehicle will have a smart key box. These boxes will allow a renter to unlock and start the car through a smartphone app.

According to Sam Zaid, the CEO of the Getaround, a Prius owner in San Francisco could make around $500 a month using the ride-renting system. Depending on the car’s lease agreement, that essentially makes the Prius free that month. Typically, the rental fee is $5 per hour and that may not seem like a lot, but if you rent it out while the car is parked at the office while you work then each hour adds up.

If this program proves to be successful, maybe it’ll expand to other models including the Lexus NX.
 
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